That's Dancing! | Chicago Reader

That's Dancing!

Anthology films are invariably less than the sum of their parts, perhaps because the editors, in their anxiousness to maximize their material, ignore the essentials of rhythm and pace and cut straight from climax to climax—a technique that turns everything into a blurry rush. This one (1985) is the work of Jack Haley Jr., who produced the first two That's Entertainment films; having depleted his stock of MGM clips, he turns here to RKO (Astaire and Rogers), Warner Brothers (Busby Berkeley), and Fox (the Nicholas Brothers in an amazing turn from Down Argentine Way) to fill out the program. The best thing about the film is its scrupulous respect for the original aspect ratios; the worst is the way it monkeys with the internal editing of several sequences, cutting out the transitions in an attempt to make the more serene stylists of the 30s and 40s look like break dancers.


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